DuPage County recently held their first heroin prevention forum.
The event was apart of a series of new outreach efforts by the county, in order to educate residents on the dangers of heroin.
A former addict as well as a mother of a victim shared their stories with the crowd of how the drug ruined their lives, tore their families a part, and how open conversation can save lives.
“My daughter is coming home this weekend and the first thing I am going to is hug her and tell her about what was talked about here tonight,” said County Board Member, Gary Grasso.
As part of a countywide contest, students designed posters, and public service announcements to educate their peers on destruction of the drug.
The community outreach, including those in Naperville, seem to be working, organizers said there has been a decrease in fatalities countywide since the summer of 2013.
“There has been a short term decrease in heroin deaths in the county, we are hoping that’s because we are educating the community and getting information out there,” said DuPage County Coroner, Richard Jorgensen.
But county officials know there is a long road ahead.
“Tonight was a great start, but it’s only a start. Now we have to get the information out there,” said Chairman of the Judicial and Public Safety Committee, Grant Eckhoff.
In addition to the recent forum, the DuPage Coalition Against Heroin will launch a full website and social media campaign next week.
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